Venezuela's poverty decline regarded as fragile
Experts assert that reported drop in poverty relies on oil income
To some experts, social investment is not the point at issue. What really matters is that oil revenues seem not to be utilized as appropriate.
"Distributing oil revenues in a way that citizens can make use of could result in temporary well-being, yet in the event that such income plummets, so will the current well-being we have enjoyed," says Henke García, director of consultancy firm Econométrica.
Without taking social support aside, García remarks, it is necessary to use oil resources for the development of infrastructure, education, health, and public utilities. Such an investment not only meets people's basic needs, but also leads to sustainable well-being.
Based on the Population and Housing Census 2011, Venezuela's critical poverty accounted for 6.97% in 2011 versus 11.36% in 2001. Non-critical poverty slipped from 21.64% in 2001 to 17.60% in 2011.
Economist Ronald Balza trusts the official results, yet he warns that the drop in poverty is associated with the oil boom, therefore "it could be fragile."
Translated by Jhean Cabrera
A group of some 60 Venezuelan economists from across the country and from different generations and backgrounds, has met regularly in the past couple of years and now has brought forth a document explaining the reasons of the current emergency and outlining specific proposals on how to address the serious economic crisis the country has plunged into over the last three years.